Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya Carita | Book 4 Chapter 7

Seventh Sarga

A Vision of the Site
where Śrī Kṛṣṇa Stole the Gopīs' Garments,
and Other Holy Places


Kṛṣṇa Dāsa continued, "Then, on the far shore of Yamunā, where the forest of Vṛndāvana exists eternally, Nanda and the other cowherds busily erected dwelling places.


"Behold this spot where the fathers and other men had created a fort out of the carts. Surrounded by the carts, Rāma and Kṛṣṇa played with the cows and cowherds.


"O Golden Moon! Here at the root of a kapittha tree, Śrī Janārdana slew Vatsāsura, the demon who took the form of a calf, as well as Bakāsura, the demon who took the form of a crane.


"In this place, Rāma and Janārdana, the protectors of the cosmic manifestation, equipped with flutes, sticks and other cowherd paraphernalia, played with their boyfriends, imitating the activities of the throngs of monkeys and the resounding cries and movements of the peacocks."


Hearing these descriptions, Gaura Hari, the crest jewel among all rasikas, who had accepted the form of an exemplary devotee, became wholly saturated with Kṛṣṇa- rasa. In His former līlā, Gaura Candra Prabhu was imbued with the rasa of viṣaya- tattva, or the absolute truth as the object of transcendental love. Whereas in His present līlā, He is imbued with the rasa of āśraya-tattva, or the absolute truth as the subject of that love.


Kṛṣṇa Dāsa continued, "O Gaurāṅga! Behold the place where the immensely sinful demon Agha, the younger brother of Baka, assumed the form of a python and was slain by Śrī Hari.


"At this spot, when Brahmā saw the festive luncheon taking place amongst Kṛṣṇa and His intimate boyfriends, he stole away the calves and boys for one year.


"In this place the ass-demon was slain, and by Kṛṣṇa's mercy he received liberation from material bondage. Look at this crystal-clear lake. Here Lord Govinda subdued the great snake named Kālīya.


"O spiritual preceptor of the world, behold the Deity form of the subduer of Kālīya. When Kṛṣṇa rose out of the lake, He was shivering, being pained by the cold water.


"Thus at this place, twelve suns rose in the sky to give Kṛṣṇa warmth. Therefore, those who are conversant in the Vedas call this place Dvādaśāditya-ghaṭṭa, or `the Bathing Place of the Twelve Suns.'


"At this spot, while the boys of Vraja were engaged in protecting the calves, Nanda Kumāra delivered them unharmed from the flames of a forest-fire. He did this because He is celebrated for His promise to relieve His bhakta from all distress.


"When Kṛṣṇa was defeated in play, out of great love He carried His boyfriend Śrīdāman on His shoulders, and the demon Pralambāsura carried the son of Rohiṇī.


"Realizing that this cowherd boy was actually a demon in disguise, Balarāma made a fist with His lotus hand and struck Pralamba on the head. His life departed from his body and the demon fell to the ground.


"See the great banyan tree named Bhāṇīra in Vṛndāraṇya. And here is the forest of reeds known as Īṣikā-vana. There the cows, the wealth of the cowherds, once entered, being eager for new grasses.


"Led by the sound of Kṛṣṇa's flute, the cows entered the heart of the forest. However, they found themselves surrounded by a forest-fire. Seeing His own herd endangered, Śrī Hari, who is affectionate to His devotees, cupped His hands and drank the fire. Behold the spot where Śrī Kṛṣṇa performed this wonderful deed.


"Desiring to get Kṛṣṇa as their husband, the young maidens of Vṛndāvana practiced an austere vow. In this place on the bank of the Yamunā they carefully kept their dresses and ornaments before bathing.


"When they entered the water, the crest-jewel of all paramours snatched their garments and speedily climbed into a kadamba tree.


"Then Śrī Kṛṣṇa spoke jestingly, teasing the gopīs who were shivering in the cold water of the Yamunā. Finally they received back their dresses after pleasing the Lord by their pure consciousness and innocent demeanour.


"Thereafter in the company of Śrī Rāma, Kṛṣṇa pointed out the worthy qualities of the trees of Vṛndāraṇya. After praising them, they bathed in Yamunā.


"Here the enjoyer of all sacrifice accepted gifts of food from the wives of learned brāhmaṇa. He enjoyed them with mighty Balarāma and the cowherd boys."

Thus ends the Seventh Sarga entitled "A Vision of the Site where Śrī Kṛṣṇa Stole the Gopīs' Garments, and Other Holy Places," in the Fourth Prakrama of the great poem Śrī Caitanya Carita.